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Serotonin syndrome related to antidepressants goes underreported

December 17th, 2012

A new report suggests serotonin syndrome, a potentially fatal condition in which the body produces too much serotonin, goes largely underreported. The leading cause of severe cases of serotonin syndrome is selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressants (SSRIs) such as Zoloft, Paxil, Celexa and Lexapro.

The study presented at the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry concluded that many mild and moderate cases of serotonin syndrome go unreported. Up to 43% of the patients in the study showed symptoms of the condition, which can be fatal in severe cases.

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressants have come under fire as new studies reveal potential side effects of the drugs. Reports have found that women who use drugs like Zoloft and Paxil during pregnancy could have an increased risk of giving birth to a child with severe birth defects, including brain and heart defects.

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